PITTSBURGH (CBS Cleveland) - Teenagers that skimp on sleep are putting themselves at risk of getting diabetes, according to a new study.
Researchers in the psychology department at the University of Pittsburgh discovered the relationship between lack of sleep and diabetes by comparing levels of insulin resistance in teens and comparing those results to the amounts of rest achieved each night, according to Psych Central.
The study reportedly involved chronicling the amount of sleep 245 otherwise healthy high school students got per night. Each teen had to maintain a sleep log and wear a wrist band that tracked rest and activity patterns.
A sample of blood was also reportedly taken while the teens were fasting, to accurately assess insulin resistance in relation to sleeping patterns.
What researchers learned was that teenagers participating in the study got an average of 6.4 hours of sleep during the week, Psych Central found, with more sleep managed during weekends than during the school week.
Researchers claimed that losing out on the recommended amount of sleep can lead to side effects such as irritability, skin and weight complications, as well as learning problems and other issues.
And according to the findings of the study, spikes in insulin resistance were also allegedly caused by a lack of rest.
“High levels of insulin resistance can lead to the development of diabetes,” the study’s lead author, Dr. Karen Matthews, was quoted as explaining to the website. “We found that if teens that normally get six hours of sleep per night get one extra hour of sleep, they would improve insulin resistance by 9 percent.”
The study was published in the October issue of SLEEP.